There’s a lot of chatter this morning about Groupon’s latest deal in the Chicago area: A 60% discount on university tuition at National-Louis University.

Sounds amazing, but the full story isn’t quite as impressive.

The offer is for one graduate-level course. Not one course as in “any one course,” but one course as in “one particular course.” A course that was concocted specifically for the Groupon promotion. It does apply toward a master’s in teaching, but only if, after completing it, you apply for, are accepted to, and enroll in NLU. (Given the nature of the class, it’s hard to imagine it being accepted as transfer credit at any other school.) All in all, this “deal” is clearly more a marketing initiative than an educational innovation.

And that shouldn’t come as a surprise, given National-Louis University’s past…

Until 1990, NLU was known as the National College of Education. It changed its name to National-Louis University to honor to its largest donor, Michael W. Louis, who had made a $30 million pledge to the college the previous year. In 1982 Louis had given NCE three million dollars to create a college of arts and sciences, which the school had also named for him. In 1983 they granted him an honorary doctorate as well.

So. Yeah.